Patience is the Key to Ultrabook Satisfaction

November 18, 2011, By George Lang

Intel recently announced an entirely new laptop architecture called “Ultrabook” built around its upcoming small-die, 22 nanometer processor code named Ivy Bridge. The problem does not lie in the fact that these Ivy Bridge ultrabooks will not be available until early 2012; the problem lies in the fact that an incomplete version of them will be available during the 2011 holiday season.

Anticipation for the sought-after ultrabook concept will make it difficult for shoppers to stay away from these early models. Based on the Intel Core processor with its 32 nm architecture, the first ultrabooks will be satisfying in namesake only and will not deliver the multitude of benefits inherent in the later Ivy Bridge models.

Based on the die shrink alone, Ivy Bridge should offer a 20 percent performance boost on most applications. But Ivy Bridge won’t just bring us those basics, as Intel is pumping it up with new technologies that include:

  • A new version of Intel’s integrated HD Graphics system, with support for all the latest video technologies and significantly improved video and gaming performance.
  • Support for PCI Express 3.0, the latest version of the bus that connects your computer’s other components to the CPU.
  • Intel’s Quick Sync Video, which will put video encoding and decoding right on the chip instead of having to route it through a software application.

What’s all that mean? Better laptops, of course, if you can handle the wait!” (Ripley)

Obviously, patience is a virtue when it comes to 2011 holiday shopping for consumer electronics. Our recommendation is to stick to the inexpensive Nooks and Kindle Fires for Christmas and save the serious laptops for after the holiday season; and who knows, for good little girls and boys, they may even be available before the spring semester commences!

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